Desert View Loop Trail is a 2.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Julian, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length2.1 miElevation gain587 ftRoute typeLoop
Dogs on leashHikingNature tripsWalkingBird watchingViewsWildflowers
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Reviews (63)
Photos (116)
Activities (62)
Completed (223)
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Rachel L
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HikingBugs

Do not bring dogs! Pretty good hike but there are tons of ticks and our dog ended up covered in them. Not worth the vet bill!

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Anthony Polselli
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OHV/Off-road driving
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Chasm Bone
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 6, 2021
Hiking
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James C
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Hiking
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Jennifer Hyman
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HikingOver grownRocky

We decided to check out this trial while camping with our kids this weekend at the William Heise campgrounds. At about 2.5 miles (including walk from campsite to trailhead), with some steep incline and decline, very narrow trails at points and some loose small rocks, I probably would not suggest for young kids. Our 9-year-old did much better than our 4-year-old, but she struggled at points too. We all enjoyed some apple pie and apple cider donuts at the Julian Pie Company after, though! And while in Julian, the kids loved gemstone skimming at the Julian Mining company. The 0.5 mile adjacent nature trail is a better option for the younger kids.

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Matt Medisch
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 13, 2020
HikingGreat!

The reviews are correct, the bushes encroach on the trail a little bit from time to time but they’re easy to pass through, no poison oak or sharp branches to scrape you. The worst of it is on the north side of the loop so you could go there and back on the southside to avoid much of it. You pretty quickly rise up and start having some views west and some cool scenery with the dead trees and rocks. It’s a very nice hike overall it’s rocky and has some decent elevation gains (it’s a hike not a stroll) but I was impressed. It’s really fun to see the change to more desert like plants as you get closer to the summit.

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Brent Stone
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HikingOver grownRockyScramble

Decent trail. Difficult to trail run or jog due to some parts being overgrown. Decent view looking East from Glen Wyatt’s Summit at sunrise.... Nothing mindblowing. Glad to check it off my list nonetheless.

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Peter and Martine Lusby
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 16, 2020
Hiking

The estimated time for this trail is 75 minutes. If you are a couple of arthritic 70 year olds like us, it will probably take. you 83 minutes. We did the long version, including the Canyon Oak Trail portion earlier this year, going clockwise. That one took us nearly 3 hours, but today we were in better shape. We find steep rugged trail sections to be easier on us going up than down, so to do just the Desert View Loop, we decided to do it counter clockwise. The scramble sections were MUCH less challenging due to this decision. If you are going to hike this trail in the summer, be warned that you won't find much shade if you gi between 9 am and 6 pm. Best time is early morning. Aim to be at the trail head shortly before sunrise, and go counter clockwise (start out on the Self Guided Nature Trail). That way you will be in full shade almost the entire climb up to Glen's View. Then on your way back down, the sun will be on your back off and on, but more off than on. If you do the early morning hike, you may be rewarded with looking down on the Coastal Eddy filling the Ramona Valley with mist, so that the surrounding mountain tops look like islands in the ocean.

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Heechoon Lee
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HikingNo shadeOver grown

Plants are overgrown. Some parts are completely blocked by overgrown plants. Quite windy, not much view, no shade.

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AllTrails User
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 4, 2020
HikingFeeNo shade

Very pleasant trail with great views. Go early if you have dogs. Almost no shade

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AllTrails User
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HikingBugsFeeNo shade

Great views. Very pleasant. Go early if you have dogs. Almost no shade

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Jeff Osburn
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Hiking

Had a great time but somehow also found poison oak that took 3 weeks to get rid of the crazy itching.

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Suzanne Rohrback
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Hiking

Good views! Easy to navigate. A little overgrown in some spots.

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Julian Anton
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HikingOver grown
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David .
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HikingOver grownRocky

Great views! I'm glad we did this one. There are areas to sit and enough shade along the way.

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J S
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarDecember 14, 2019
Hiking

Fun easy quick trail. Beautiful this time of year. Didn’t see a soul. The dogs loved it too!

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Mitch Dressing
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 13, 2019
Hiking

Great short hike with plenty of good views. A mix of terrain made it fun and the narrow paths provided good shade at times. Definitely recommend this hike if you stay at William Heise.

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Andy Porter
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 3, 2019
Hiking

Nice hike with some great views of the desert mountains. Has some trees but mainly chaparral. Witnessed a gorgeous sunset.

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trey jasso
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 30, 2019
Hiking

Late July in the afternoon! Beautiful but hot. Great work out with cool visuals. Bees along the way!

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Austin Doyle
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Hiking
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Byunghwan Hong
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Hiking

Done with my three young daughters.

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Aaron Goldman
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Hiking
First to Review

Definitely worthwhile considering it’s a short 2.1 mile loop. A lot of scenery and a handful of steep/rocky inclines. However, it levels out in a few areas, allowing you to catch your breath or grab a quick bite to eat. Hiked in the Winter, but I’m sure that Spring has more scenery to offer.

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